Buzz!: Quiz World PlayStation 3
Published by: Sony Computer Entertainment Europe
Developed by: Relentless Software
Whilst the Buzz! series is rightly regarded as the premiere quiz game series, there can be little doubt that it's all grown a little stale over the last few years. The last game in the series that we looked at was the lamentable Buzz! Brain of the UK which is definitely one of the worst to date. Thankfully Buzz!: Quiz World is a return to form and is definitely worth it for anyone who has enjoyed the previous games or indeed those who just want a quality quiz game. It still isn't as deaf gamer friendly as it could be however and has the same problems there were present in previous Buzz! titles.
Buzz!: Quiz world offers 5,000 questions on a wide variety of subjects. In addition to this it's compatible with the plethora of Buzz! question packs that you can purchase on the PlayStation Network and the game allows the use of custom quizzes in the MyBuzz! mode (MyBuzz! quizzes are created online at www.mybuzzquiz.com). It's safe to say then that it will be a long time before you grow tired of seeing the same old questions which is certainly a good thing in a quiz game. Of course what's really needed in a new Buzz! game is for something to freshen things up a little. Quiz World offers three new rounds and some new game types and in this respect the game doesn't disappoint.
The three new rounds on offer in Quiz World are Over the Edge, On the Spot and Boiling Point. In Over the Edge each player is attempting to avoid being thrown into the gunge. A correct answer will push your opponents one step closer to being thrown in the green slime whilst an incorrect answer will put you one step closer. The winner is the last player standing. In On the Spot you'll give your opinion on whether you think your opponent will get the answer correct. You have four choices ranging from definitely to no chance (or words to that effect). If you think they will definitely get the answer correct, they will earn 100 points for a correct answer and lose 100 points for a wrong answer. Should you think they have no chance they will earn 400 points for answering correctly or lose the said amount for answering wrongly. Boiling Point simply requires you to answer enough correct questions to fill your thermometer gauge. There are no penalties for wrong answers (or for your opponents when you answer correctly) and as such it feels like an unnecessary mode.
The game types on offer in Quiz World are: Standard (which supports up to eight players if you have two sets of Buzz! controllers), Round Select, Crazy Rounds, Serious Rounds, 15-minute or 45-minute game. You can also opt to bypass the new questions and play using any of the Buzz! Quiz packs that you may have previously downloaded. Crazy Rounds has what's termed as the silliest rounds in the game such as Pass the Bomb and Pie Fight. It only supports 2-4 players. Serious Rounds is everything but the silly stuff and again it's only for 2-4 players. 15-minute and 45-minute offer both the shortest and longest Buzz! experience respectively. Both modes only support 2-4 players. You can also opt to play a custom game. Here you can disable or enable any of the rounds in the game. Up to four players can take part in an online game of Buzz! Quiz World.
It's worth mentioning that Quiz World isn't that great an experience for single-players. There are two single-player modes on offer: Over the Edge Challenge and Stop the Clock Challenge. In the Over the Edge Challenge you'll attempt to delay being thrown into the gunge for as long as possible. Essentially you're one step nearer to the gunge with every incorrect answer so you'll want to answer correctly as much as possible before you're thrown into the green stuff. In the Stop the Clock Challenge you have to answer thirty questions as quickly as you can. Speedy answers are the name of the game here as the points you can earn for a correct answer will rapidly decrease. The idea is to get as big a points total as you can so speedy answers are essential. Neither of these modes will keep you busy for long although I suppose you could view them as practice modes for when you have family or friends to play against.
The presentation of Buzz!: Quiz World looks better than in the previous PlayStation 3 versions of Buzz!. The game opens with a rather amusing cut scene of the balding Buzz entering the studio and being fitted with a wig and a corset to pull in his portly tummy. There are a few new avatars to choose from but it would have been more pleasing if all the old ones had been thrown out and replaced with new ones. Still, there's little to complain about with this area of the game because Buzz!: Quiz World really captures that slick quiz show look and there's not a lot that could be improved upon.
As we mentioned earlier, Buzz!: Quiz World shares the same problems as previous versions in the series and as such isn't what you would call an accessible game for deaf gamers. There are no subtitles in the game which means you'll miss out on all of Buzz's comments which instantly removes a lot of the humour from the game. Some of Buzz's comments are important however, such as when Buzz tells you that you have a reduced amount of time to answer during the Final Countdown round, and it's a shame that these aren't subtitled. The questions are shown in text which makes a fair portion of the game accessible. However, there are music questions which are impossible to answer (unless you do so through lucky guesswork), as you'll need to be able to hear the songs being played. Of course you can avoid picking the music related questions, which is certainly a valid workaround, but I would rather have preferred an option setting to prevent the music topic from appearing during a game. Essentially then it's not anymore deaf gamer friendly than previous games in the series and that's hugely disappointing.
Buzz!: Quiz World is certainly the best game in the series to appear on the PlayStation 3 and if you haven't yet picked up a Buzz! game, this is the one to go for. It feels more polished than the previous games in the series and the new rounds help to freshen up the experience a little. That said, if you've grown tired of the series, there's little here that might rekindle your enthusiasm and it's still far from being accessible for deaf gamers which is, once again, hugely disappointing. Essentially then, Buzz!: Quiz World is the best quiz game you can currently purchase for the PlayStation 3 and those who are looking for a quiz game this Christmas should definitely opt for this.